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The unlucky few who have fallen to injury – I know you’re all dying to get up and be back at it. But resuming training too soon might worsen your injury or lead to an additional one. Now, the most commonsensical thing to say would be ‘follow your doctor’s recommendations’.
But what if it’s one of those little sprains or strains that don’t warrant a trip to the doctor’s that still hurt? Well, here is a list of common running injuries and some advice about what to do.
This is probably the most common of all injuries. Even non-runners will sprain their ankles, and you can sprain your ankles even when you’re not running. If the pain isn’t deterrent enough, here’s a firm reminder for you to rest your sprained ankle.
You can gradually go back to putting weight on your ankle and eventually begin running with it again, but in the initial 1-2 weeks, it is critical that you do not worsen your injury any further by running with it.
The continued stress from consistent overtraining sets the stage for a stress fracture. This is not like an acute fracture that arises from a one-off incident like a slip or a fall. However, it is equally serious, and you will need at least 16 weeks off training. Meanwhile, keep up your stamina and fitness through pool-running and swimming.
Listen to your body; if it hurts, you should probably get it checked out. The longer you leave it, the worse it will get and the longer you will be out of running for when it finally gets bad enough for you to stop.
To avoid this, remember to build up bone strength and density, and know your limits. Have patience, and the results will come. To force yourself to achieve what takes a few months in a few weeks will only injure you. It is really counterproductive, too.
Muscle imbalances and weak hips on top of running downhill and the usual pounding-on-the-pavement type of running put extra stress on your knees, and this will result in patellofemoral pain syndrome (PFPS), otherwise ‘affectionately’ called runner’s knee. It’s a really common running injury!
Fortunately, you don’t have to stop for an extended period for this one. Just ease up on the running, and remember to stop once you feel pain. Check for any muscle imbalances and train to even those out, and run on flat and smoother surfaces. Also, a well-cushioned pair of shoes will help.
“To force yourself to achieve what takes a few months in a few weeks will only injure you. It’s really counterproductive, too.”
Don’t forget to take care of yourself in your eagerness to get started on running and covering those miles! Simple things like including strength training in your workout regime, and replacing your shoes when they have worn out can save you a lot of pain and trouble, and you’ll be able to be consistent throughout your workout routine as well.
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